SingPost completed last week a trial run for a delivery drone between the towns of Lorong Halus and Pulau Ubin, according to a company press release.
Using a SteadiDrone platform, coupled with a Pixhawk guidance system, the drone project launched under the auspices of a joint agreement between SingPost and the nation’s government-funded tech lab, the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA)
Company officials say the five-minute test flight carried a t-shirt and a letter over a total distance of 1.25 miles. The drone can carry up to a pound of cargo over a distance of almost one and half miles and up to around 140 feet.
“Although it will be a while before it is viable for drone mail delivery to take off in Singapore, taking into consideration commercial and safety factors; this first step by SingPost and IDA demonstrates what Singapore is trying out with our Smart Nation vision – to have the various parts of our ecosystem collaborate, experiment with new ways of doing things, and in the process, literally aim for the sky with new technology,” said IDA Managing Director Jacqueline Poh.
Singapore is steadily building a track record of cooperation between government regulators and commercial UAV players. Last year, Coca-Cola advertising agency Ogilvy & Mather partnered with the Singapore Kindness Movement to deliver 2,734 cans of the soda via drone to migrant construction workers at various skyscrapers. SingPost’s maiden drone voyage received the blessings of the Ministry of Transport, Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore, the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore, the Republic of Singapore Air Force as well as the Singapore Police Force.
Drones are now used by Singapore companies to inspect oil and gas flare stacks in petrochemical plants, scrutinize underground pipelines for leakages, calculate sand-pile volumes in construction sites, and perform aerial mapping, photography and videography.
“There is immense potential in UAV technology for last-mile mail and ecommerce delivery,” stated SingPost’s Head of Digital Services Bernard Leong. “Not only do we want to enable or accelerate eCommerce, we hope to contribute towards building Singapore into a Smart Nation, where technology improves the quality of lives.”
Jason is a longstanding contributor to DroneLife with an avid interest in all things tech. He focuses on anti-drone technologies and the public safety sector; police, fire, and search and rescue.
Beginning his career as a journalist in 1996, Jason has since written and edited thousands of engaging news articles, blog posts, press releases and online content.
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